Unified Action – February 2013

Take Action to Support Increasing the Minimum Wage

Sponsored by Sarah Nolan/CAFe, http://organizenm.org/

The Issue

SB416 (Raise Minimum Wage, sponsored by Senator Richard Martinez) is moving through the New Mexico legislature right now. Two amendments were added to the bill. The first amendment  would exempt businesses with 11 employees or fewer. The second amendment would exempt trainees for one year. There is much controversy about this issue. The Senators need to hear from us that raising the minimum wage will be good for New Mexicans.

New Mexico Minimum Wage Fact Sheet

“Hard Work Deserves Fair Pay”

What the Proposal Will Do: The proposed minimum wage increase would mirror the increase recently approved by 66% of Albuquerque voters, raising the minimum wage $1 to $8.50. Tipped workers are part of a separate piece of legislation and are not included in SB 416.

Increasing the minimum wage will help rebuild an economy that works for all of us. It will generate $67 million in new consumer spending and create 590 new jobs.

The wage increase will make local businesses more competitive and level the playing field by requiring their out-of-state, low-wage, chain competitors to pay higher wages. These corporations give their CEOs bigger bonuses every year, and then claim they can’t afford to pay their workers a fair wage.

The wage increase will benefit 147,000 workers, giving New Mexicans who make $15,000/year a raise of up to $2,000. New Mexicans who work hard and play by the rules, should be paid enough to live off of their wages.

What does $40.00 a week mean to a New Mexico family? The average cost of household groceries in New Mexico is estimated to be $370 per month. A raise of $1.00 per hour would amount to approximately half of that monthly cost.

Most importantly, it will reward hard work with fair pay. The hardest working New Mexicans have not seen an increase in the minimum wage since 2009, even as the cost of gas, milk, and everything else has gone up.  92% of minimum wage earners are adults, so increasing the minimum wage helps parents take better care of their families.

It is wildly popular. The Albuquerque ballot initiative received 66% of the vote in November, collecting more votes than President Obama or any other candidate.  A statewide poll conducted in December showed that 79% of New Mexicans support the increase to $8.50.

What we are asking

  • Attend the upcoming City Council Meeting on Monday March 4, 1pm, and speak up in support of the City Council Resolution to raise the minimum wage
  • Tell our elected leaders why YOU support raising the wage and you want them to strengthen ALL worker pay by removing amendments to Senate Bill 416

Call your State Senator and the following Senators:
Sen. Phil Griego              505-986-4513
Sen. Clemente Sanchez  505-986-4369
Sen. John Sapien             505-986-4834
Sen. Michael Padilla        505-986-4380
Sen. Mary Kay Papen     505-986-4733

Say: I support raising the minimum wage to strengthen ALL worker pay. I want the Senator to vote YES on SB 416 with the amendments removed.